Sunday, April 2, 2017

premium nutrition for the endurance athlete: a beachbody performance review

Disclaimer: I received Beachbody Performance products to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!


I am always on the hunt for decent products that'll help keep me hydrated during my run, as well as helping my muscles recover afterwards. Beachbody Performance has a whole line of products to help with just this, so I was excited to try it out (and in the midst of HEAVY marathon training). Originally we thought we were just getting the Hydrate and the Recover formulas, but Beachbody was nice enough to send me four of their five products: Energize (Lemon), Hydrate (citrus), Recover (chocolate), and Recharge (vanilla) (The Advanced Performance Stack). They also sent a blender bottle. If you follow me on Instagram, you've probably seen lots of stories and posts from me sharing the Beachbody love.

Hydrate - Citrus.

I was honestly impressed with all of these products. I am VERY picky on texture, so a lot of protein powders are crossed off my list because they have a texture that doesn't gel with my picky nature. Beachbody Performance did not have a bad texture at all, which was a relief. I was afraid I'd opt in for this product and then hate how it tasted/felt. All flavors were great and meshed well with my preferences. Phew.

Let's go in order of how you should be drinking these products and why.


Energize is a pre-workout drink. "Blast through your toughest challenges with a surge of energy. Before you get active, take Energize to help sharpen focus, push harder, and last longer." About 30 minutes before my run (I used this most often during the weekdays, when I run after work and am feeling tired) I would mix one scoop of Energize with 8oz of water, drink, and then go for my run. I could feel an energy boost, which was greatly needed after a long day or working/commuting. It was a nice, tart, lemonade-like flavor. Easy to drink, goes down well, and sits well in the stomach.

Info from the website on Energize:
Energize pre-workout product is formulated with key ingredients that are scientifically shown to help give you energy without jittery side effects. Take it before workouts to help:*

  • Boost energy and endurance
  • Improve intense exercise performance
  • Sharpen focus and reaction time
  • Increase muscle power output
  • Delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue
  • Energize ingredients and nutrition information

Energize.

What are the key ingredients in Energize?*
  • Beta-alanine: This amino acid helps reduce lactic acid buildup in your muscles, which helps to delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue so you can push harder and last longer. Numerous scientific studies show that beta-alanine is especially effective at helping to improve performance during intense exercise.
  • Low-dose caffeine (from green tea and coffee bean extract): Low-dose caffeine has been shown to be ergogenic (which means it helps enhance performance). It also helps improve reaction time and focus, and reduce exercise-induced muscle fatigue. From recreational exercisers to elite athletes, studies show that it can give you both a mental and physical boost.
  • Quercetin: This powerful performance-enhancing phytonutrient gets a lot of attention in leading exercise physiology-nutrition laboratories because it can help improve endurance and delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue to help you get through your workouts and give you a competitive edge.

Why is Energize better than other energy products?*
  • You get a safe boost of energy (without jittery side effects).
  • It's a powerful combination of ergogenic (performance-enhancing) ingredients and phytonutrients that are scientifically shown to help improve exercise performance, sharpen focus, and delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue.
  • It contains functional ingredients that have been scientifically shown to work. Other products include gimmicky ingredients with no evidence that they work.
  • Key ingredients are included at their clinically established effective serving levels.
  • No artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, or preservatives. 
The cost of Energize is $49.95 for 40 servings. 

Next up was the Hydrate. I drank this during my runs. It was also citrus flavored, though I'd say it was a bit lighter tasting than the Energize. This also sat well in my stomach – no issues with feeling sloshy stomach, upset stomach, and the I liked the taste (not too sweet, like some other electrolyte drinks out there). I sweat a TON when I run – even the short ones, so I definitely need electrolytes to help hydrate and replenish what I'm losing in that sweat. Beachbody Performance Hydrate kept me feeling good all the way through.

The whole line up – Energize, Hydrate, Recover, Recharge.

"Boost hydration during your training sessions for peak performance. Typical sports drinks have too much sugar and artificial ingredients that can actually dehydrate you. And water alone doesn't effectively hydrate during exercise or replace what you lose through sweat. Hydrate is specially formulated for all-out performance with an optimal balance of carbohydrates and electrolytes that quickly replaces what's lost and improves endurance, so you can stay hydrated when you need it most.*"

More info from the website:
The ingredients in Hydrate During-Workout Formula are scientifically shown to help:*
  • Support hydration during exercise
  • Replace electrolytes lost during exercise
  • Improve exercise performance
  • Improve endurance
  • Increase fluid absorption during exercise
  • Hydrate ingredients and nutrition information
What are the key ingredients in Hydrate?*
  • Hydration Blend: A balanced combination of sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium helps maintain the body's ideal fluid balance and replace key electrolytes to help you last longer and feel better, even through the toughest workout.
  • Quercetin: This powerful performance-enhancing phytonutrient gets a lot of attention in leading exercise physiology-nutrition laboratories because it can help improve endurance and delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue to help you get through your workouts and give you a competitive edge.
  • Low-dose carbohydrates (from natural sugars): The carbohydrates in Hydrate are precisely dosed to ensure an optimal osmolality for rapid hydration to help improve performance and help delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue, without overloading the body with sugar that can actually dehydrate you.
Why is Hydrate better than other hydration products?*
  • It's the ideal ratio of carbohydrates and electrolytes that, when combined with a specific amount of water, creates the optimal osmolality for rapid fluid absorption during exercise. Osmolality refers to the ratio of solute dissolved in solution. Typical sports drinks contain too much sugar, which raises the osmolality and makes them slower and harder to digest. They can cause gastrointestinal distress, and can even be dehydrating, which is the opposite effect you want during exercise.
  • Hydrate solution is slightly lower than the osmolality of your blood, which means your body can absorb it better, easier, and faster—for the most effective hydration possible.
  • More fluid absorption means better blood circulation to muscles and skin, which helps boost exercise performance, improve endurance, and delay exercise-induced muscle fatigue.
  • Hydrate helps maintain the body's water balance and replace important electrolytes that are lost through sweat.
  • When you're properly hydrated, you'll feel better, recover faster, and have more stamina.
  • No artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, or preservatives.

The cost of Hydrate is 34.95 for 40 servings.

And for after your workouts we have Recover. I got the chocolate flavor and it was delightful. Instructions said to mix with water, but I've never been a fan of water + protein powder, so I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk. I always use the Nutribullet to mix protein powders, so no exception here. It mixed well, and was quick and easy to make/drink immediately after my runs. Again – no weird texture happening so I could drink it happily with no issues. I made sure to drink it within 30 minutes of finishing my runs to have the best impact.

Loved the Chocolate Recover! So tasty and goes down easy after a long run,
when I usually have trouble eating anything.

Info from the website:
Help combat exercise-induced muscle soreness and jump-start recovery so you can hit each training session just as hard. Recover takes advantage of the critical post-training window with the ideal combination of time-released proteins and phytonutrients to help facilitate muscle recovery and reduce muscle breakdown. Take Recover after every training session to help combat exercise-induced muscle soreness, speed muscle recovery, and restore your strength.* (Also available in Orange)

The ingredients in Recover Post-Workout Formula are scientifically shown to help:*
  • Speed muscle recovery
  • Combat exercise-induced muscle soreness
  • Reduce muscle breakdown
  • Promote lean-muscle growth
  • Improve adaptation to exercise
  • Improve muscle strength recovery
  • Support muscle glycogen recovery
What are the key ingredients in Recover?*
  • Pomegranate extract: This powerful ellagitannin-rich extract is scientifically shown to promote faster muscle recovery while helping to manage exercise-induced muscle soreness. It's a natural recovery-enhancing ingredient that helps muscles return to normal strength faster, especially after intense workouts.
  • 20 grams of high-quality protein: Fast-, intermediate-, and slow-release proteins ensure a constant supply of nutrients to create the optimal environment to improve muscle recovery and promote muscle growth.
  • Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs): Recover also includes an ideal 2:1:1 ratio of Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine, branched-chain amino acids that are unique for their ability to help promote muscle synthesis and support rebuilding.
Why is Recover better than other post-workout products?*
  • Way more effective than a simple protein powder, Recover uses key ingredients scientifically shown to help accelerate muscle recovery, reduce exercise-induced muscle soreness, and improve strength recovery. It provides your muscles with a rapid and sustained supply of nutrients when your workout is over, to boost your recovery to get you ready to crush your next workout.
  • Key phytonutrients help muscle recovery, reduce exercise-induced muscle soreness, and speed up the return of normal muscle function.
  • Recover contains functional ingredients that have been scientifically shown to work. Other products include gimmicky ingredients at insignificant levels with no evidence that they work.
  • Key ingredients are included at their clinically established effective dosage levels.
  • No artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, or preservatives.
The cost of Recover is $69.95 for 20 servings. 

And finally we have Recharge. "Support your body's recovery overnight with Recharge. It's specially formulated to help accelerate overnight recovery, combat exercise-induced muscle soreness, and promote muscle growth when your body is primed to accept it—while you sleep! Slow-release protein, amino acids, and powerful phytonutrients help reduce muscle breakdown, promote lean-muscle synthesis, and reduce delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).*" 

Recharge - help those muscles recover overnight. Also very tasty.

I would make a Recharge smoothie for myself each night within an hour of going to bed. This instructions say to mix with water, but like with the Recover it's just not my thing. I mixed it in the Nutribullet with... you guessed it – unsweetened vanilla almond milk. One night I grabbed the wrong container and mixed sweetened vanilla almond milk. It was still quite tasty, but definitely a lot of vanilla flavor happening haha.

The ingredients in Recharge Nighttime Recovery Formula are scientifically shown to help:*
  • Support overnight muscle recovery
  • Combat exercise-induced muscle soreness
  • Reduce muscle breakdown
  • Promote lean-muscle synthesis
  • Improve adaptation to exercise
What are the key ingredients in Recharge?*
  • Tart cherry: The powerful tart cherry powder in Recharge delivers anthocyanins shown to help reduce exercise-induced muscle soreness and improve recovery after intense exercise, both for endurance and resistance training. Anthocyanins are phytonutrients that are being investigated as potent recovery aids in athletic recovery situations.
  • 20 grams of slow-release micellar casein: This slow-release protein is shown to support overnight recovery by promoting muscle growth and helping reduce muscle breakdown. It provides sustained muscle recovery support and maintenance for hardworking muscles.
  • Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs): Recharge includes an ideal 2:1:1 ratio of Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine, branched-chain amino acids that are unique for their ability to help promote muscle synthesis and support rebuilding.
Why is Recharge better than other recovery products?*
  • It targets your recovery while you sleep with ingredients scientifically shown to help support overnight muscle recovery and phytonutrients to help combat exercise-induced muscle soreness.
  • Recharge contains functional ingredients that have been scientifically shown to work. Other products include gimmicky ingredients with no evidence that they work.
  • Key ingredients are included at their clinically established effective serving levels.
  • No artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, or preservatives.
The price for Recharge is $69.96 for 20 servings.

I could honestly feel a HUGE difference when I woke up, especially after long run weekends. I would make sure to drink the Recover 30 minutes within finishing my run and then the Recharge within an hour before bed. I would go to bed with sore muscles, and woke up feeling better than I have in the past before I began this routine. The miles have really been amping up, too, with being in the heart of marathon training (coming up on April 22 - what?!), so making sure my muscles are getting the proper fuel they need to recover from the long runs in super important. Did I mention I have a half marathon the day after my marathon? So, getting those smoothies in after the marathon to help me the next day will be huge. I know the cost might turn some off, thinking it's too high, but Beachbody Performance products are quality products and you'll notice a difference. 


Not convinced? They have a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee: 

Still not sure if you want that extra energy, focus, and endurance? Try Energize for 30 days. If you don't feel better, perform better, and see the results you want, simply send it back within 30 days for a full refund of the purchase price (less s&h). No risk, all reward. Guaranteed.

Still not sure if you want more power and strength? Try Recover for 30 days. If you don't notice better high-intensity performance and improved resistance training, simply send it back within 30 days for a full refund of the purchase price (less s&h). No risk, all reward. Guaranteed.

Still not sure if you want help to support overnight recovery? Try Recharge for 30 days. If you don't recover faster, reduce your exercise-induced muscle soreness, and see the results you want, simply send it back within 30 days for a full refund of the purchase price (less s&h). No risk, all reward. Guaranteed.


Another great thing about Beachbody Performance products is that they are NSF Certified. What does that mean? Read on:

TESTED BY NSF INTERNATIONAL
As an independent, accredited organization, NSF International tests and certifies products. The NSF Certified for Sport® marking assures your Beachbody Performance products have been thoroughly tested for quality.

What does this mean to you?
This means you can be confident that Beachbody Performance supplements have been rigorously tested to meet NSF's strict banned substance standards when taken at the recommended serving size. Beachbody went through this rigorous certification process to meet the growing demand of athletes, coaches and all those concerned about banned substances in professional and amateur sports.

Connect with Beachbody:

Read what the other Pros had to say:

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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